Archive for the 'mail order' Category

Highlighting #MailOrderWaste

By Stephanie DuBois, Associate Director, Marketing Communications

We recently updated our “Waste Not, Want Not” slideshow with some new pictures of mail order waste. This week, we are highlighting some of the best examples on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ and we encourage you to do the same. Use the hashtag #mailorderwaste on each social media channel and share your stories and images of costly wasted medications. (Be sure to remove or black out all patient and other personal information before posting photos to comply with HIPAA and other privacy protections.)

Continue reading ‘Highlighting #MailOrderWaste’

Seniors Air Concerns on Mail Order Pharmacy Requirements

By Kevin Schweers

In the September issue of the Journal of Managed Care Pharmacy (JMCP), Dr. Michael T. Rupp reports on his survey of seniors that documented their concerns regarding mail order pharmacy and outright opposition to mandating its use by patients.

Continue reading ‘Seniors Air Concerns on Mail Order Pharmacy Requirements’

States Lead the Way in PBM Reforms: Will Congress Follow?

By Michael Rule, Associate Director of Public Affairs and Grassroots Advocacy

Independent Community Pharmacists are both small business owners and trusted healthcare providers. As such, they contribute to both the local economy through employment opportunities and taxes. In fact, studies have shown that for every dollar spent at a local small business, $.68 is reinvested in the local economy, this drops to $.43 for chain stores, and mail order purchases bring no economic benefit to communities. As healthcare providers, independent community pharmacists they promote proper medication adherence with patients, check the patient’s medication regimen for harmful interactions, and when appropriate work with the patient’s doctor to prescribe lower cost generic alternatives: all of which contribute to savings in the health system.

Continue reading ‘States Lead the Way in PBM Reforms: Will Congress Follow?’

Patient Survey Finds More Good News for Independent Community Pharmacies

By Kevin Schweers

Independent community pharmacies score high once again in customer service, according to the recently released Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmacy Satisfaction Pulse survey of patients. Chain Drug Review has run an interesting series of articles on the survey’s findings. This blog post looks at the survey from the independent community pharmacy perspective.

Independent pharmacies garnered the top satisfaction scores among all pharmacies. Ninety-one percent of patients who said they primarily use an independent pharmacy said they are overall very satisfied or satisfied. Independents also scored highest in key factors such as filling prescriptions accurately and efficiently, convenience, pharmacy/staff, loyalty and likelihood to return and to recommend to someone else.

That’s consistent with past surveys in this series. Also in line with past years is the fact that mail order receives the lowest satisfaction rates among patients, compared to all other pharmacy options.

Some other numbers of note from the survey include:

  • Independent pharmacy consumers were among the most likely pharmacy users to say their pharmacy had improved over the past year (on top of already high satisfaction scores in the previous surveys). Mail order patients were least likely to report an improvement in service.

  • Patients of independent pharmacies receive their prescriptions within 20 minutes on average—much more promptly than those who patron other pharmacies. Patients said it takes two or three time as long, on average, to receive their prescription at other brick-and-mortar pharmacies. Moreover, one-third of independents’ customers received their prescription in 10 minutes or less.

  • Independent pharmacists interact with their customers far more often compared to other pharmacy types. Perhaps not surprisingly, a much larger percentage of independent pharmacy customers report the pharmacy staff as the main reason they chose their pharmacy, compared to other options.

  • Independent pharmacies scored slightly higher than mail order in patient satisfaction with pricing. Yet, on a separate question, the vast majority of mail order customers (69 percent) report choosing mail because of “pricing/insurance” (emphasis added). Arguably, this reinforces the conventional wisdom that few patients willingly seek out mail order pharmacies, but many are required to use them by insurance plans, even if the costs to the plan may be higher.

  • Independent pharmacies’ helpfulness with insurance issues increased markedly compared to the same 2012 survey.

The full survey has plenty of other nuggets that patients and independent community pharmacy staff alike may find informative. Previous editions of the survey can be found at www.pharmacysatisfaction.com.

Pressure Mounting on CMS to Delay Ban on Home Delivery of DTS

By Michael Rule, Manager of Public Affairs and Grassroots Advocacy

With the July 1 implementation of the national mail order (NMO) program rapidly approaching, Representative Mike McIntyre (D-NC) became the 44th member of the House of Representatives to raise concerns with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). If implemented, the NMO would ban independent pharmacists from providing home delivery of diabetes testing supplies (DTS) to Medicare Part B beneficiaries.

Continue reading ‘Pressure Mounting on CMS to Delay Ban on Home Delivery of DTS’

Patient Reviews Suggest Mail Order Doesn’t Deliver

By Michael Rule, Manager of Public Affairs and Grassroots Advocacy

For many consumers, the promise of mail order saving is a part of why they select this method of delivery. Internet and television advertisements tell them that if they order a product online or over the phone they can save on out-of-pocket costs and enjoy the added convenience of having the product delivered directly to their home. However, with pharmaceuticals, errors in shipment or delays in delivery can have serious consequences on a patient’s health.

Continue reading ‘Patient Reviews Suggest Mail Order Doesn’t Deliver’

More Mail Order Pharmacy Waste Documented by Pharmacists

By Kevin Schweers

Community pharmacists continue to report egregious cases of wasted prescription drugs fueled in part by mail order pharmacy practices, such as auto-shipping. While the pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) that own most mail order facilities may downplay incidences of shipped wastage, Medicare officials have voiced new concerns about this phenomenon and the experiences of local pharmacists suggest that Medicare is in the right.

Continue reading ‘More Mail Order Pharmacy Waste Documented by Pharmacists’

Liberty Medical’s Troubles Recall Rampant Mail Order Waste

By B. Douglas Hoey, RPh, MBA

Liberty Medical Supply, Inc., made iconic (or infamous depending on your perspective) by pitchman Wilford Brimley and allegedly one of the biggest purveyors of mail order waste, has fallen on hard financial times, recently filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. While the company’s future may be uncertain, mail order waste is alive and well. Continue reading ‘Liberty Medical’s Troubles Recall Rampant Mail Order Waste’

Patients’ Concerns with Mail Order Diabetes Test Supplies, Waste Documented in New Report

By Kevin Schweers

A new report released earlier this month examining Medicare diabetes testing supplies (DTS) appears to reinforce three things about mail order health care: 1) it’s not for everyone 2) it results in wasteful “auto-shipping” of medical products and 3) it’s more expensive than advertised. Continue reading ‘Patients’ Concerns with Mail Order Diabetes Test Supplies, Waste Documented in New Report’

In Push for Savings, Don’t Overlook Mail Order Pharmacy Wastage

NCPA is urging Congress to examine wasteful spending on potentially unnecessary medication refills, such as through mail order, as lawmakers hold a House Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee hearing Wed., Nov. 28th entitled, “Examining Options to Combat Health Care Waste, Fraud and Abuse.” Continue reading ‘In Push for Savings, Don’t Overlook Mail Order Pharmacy Wastage’


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